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22 September 2008 @ 04:28 pm
modern finance  
You know, the boys in the backroom must have been giggling like mad when they wrote the Paulson bailout. "Let's have them give us 700 billion..." "to start!" "...with no oversight..." "hee!" "...and absolute legal immunity!" "God, we're good! Oh, hey, some of our friends might be out of work anyway..." "No problem, I'll just scribble in this bit about being able to hire people at any salary we like."

Also, people seem to still be under the delusion that we'd be buying actual assets that could then be sold off to recover some portion of the losses, or even, delusion of delusions, make a profit. Tranches, baby, tranches; if there's one word to know in this whole thing, it's that. What we are buying are securities that say we are third in line for any money back from those assets, and the first two people in line must be fully recompensed before we get anything at all. And guess what? Because the value was so inflated, we get zero.

We are buying the shit in the shit sandwich, and only the shit. There ain’t going to be any scraping the shit off and at least having a piece of bread; other people are keeping the bread.